Home Articles How to Steam Spinach in the Microwave (EASY Recipe)

How to Steam Spinach in the Microwave (EASY Recipe)

Looking for a veggie side dish but strapped for time? No worries, you’ve just got to learn how to steam spinach in the microwave! 

How To Steam Spinach in the Microwave featuring Cooked Steamed Green Spinach in a White Bowl

This mighty green leafy vegetable can transform into an easy side in under 10 minutes. 

Your handy-dandy microwave is the secret weapon here. So, grab your spinach and a microwave-safe bowl, and check out the recipe below! 

Microwave Spinach

Now, be honest. When you first hear “microwave spinach,” it probably sounds about as appetizing as reheated pizza. Less. 

But trust me. This method is a game-changer! It’s quick, easy, and practically foolproof. 

Plus, it’s a lifesaver when you’ve got to make something nutritious while short on time.

All you need is fresh spinach, salt, garlic, and a splash of water. Oh, and a dash of oil or butter for that silky finish. 

Toss everything in a microwave-safe bowl, zap it on high for a few minutes, and voila! You’ve got perfectly wilted green spinach ready to rock your dinner plate.

Worried about nutrients? Don’t be. Microwaving can help keep vitamins- unlike boiling, where they may escape into the water. 

So, why not give microwave-steamed spinach a spin? After all, everyone could use a little more green in their lives.

Pieces of Fresh Spinach on a Wooden Chopping Board


  • Fresh Spinach Leaves: You need about a pound of these leafy greens. Freshness is key here. So, grab vibrant, crisp leaves and leave behind any that are wilting or discolored.
  • Water: Just a couple of tablespoons should do the trick. It’s a little surprising, right? But that’s all you need to create the steam.
  • Garlic: Whether you choose minced cloves or powder, garlic brings a flavorful punch. It’s the secret weapon that takes your spinach from good to great.
  • Salt: A mere 1/2 teaspoon is all it takes to elevate the flavors. You know what they say – a little salt goes a long way!
  • Olive Oil or Butter: With a tablespoon of either, you add silky texture to your spinach.
  • Grated Parmesan Cheese: This is optional. Sprinkle it on top for that added salty, nutty kick.

How to Steam Spinach in the Microwave

1. Clean the spinach. 

  • Give the spinach leaves a good rinse under cold water. 
  • Remove any long stems or leaves that don’t look their best.

2. Prep the spinach. 

  • Pop the spinach into a microwave-safe bowl. 
  • Then add the water, oil or butter, garlic, and salt. 
  • Give everything a good toss to evenly coat the spinach leaves. 

3. Put a lid on it. 

  • Cover the dish with something microwave-safe. 
  • A lid, a plate – even plastic wrap will work. If using plastic wrap, leave a little vent for steam to escape. 

4. Microwave. 

  • Now, microwave the spinach on high for 1 minute. 
  • Then, stir the spinach so it cooks evenly. You’re looking for that lovely, even wilt here. 

5. Zap it again. 

  • Microwave for another 1-2 minutes or until your spinach is wilted and tender.

6. Drain it. 

  • Remove the dish and drain away any excess liquid. You do NOT want your spinach to be swimming in water!

7. Make It Cheesy. 

  • If you’re going the cheesy route, now is the time to sprinkle on that Parmesan. 
  • Then serve and enjoy!
Microwave Steamed Fresh Spinach

How Long to Steam Spinach in the Microwave

Microwaving spinach is about as quick and efficient as cooking gets. The whole process can zip by in just about 1 to 3 minutes

  • On average, it takes less than 3 minutes for 8 ounces of mid-sized spinach.

However, the exact timing can depend on a few factors

For instance, what type of spinach are you going with? 

  • If it’s baby spinach – those little leaves are super tender. So they’ll be ready in no time. 
  • Regular spinach might take a touch longer.

Your microwave also plays a role. Some take longer than others to wilt the spinach. So, it’s best to experiment and see what works best for you. 

The amount of spinach you want to steam will also play a role. More spinach will take longer to steam. And vice versa. 

Microwave Steamed Spinach Served on a Plate

Tips for the Best Microwave Spinach

This line-up of top tips and tricks will elevate your microwaved spinach game: 

  • Choose fresh and vibrant spinach: Always go for fresh spinach leaves that are vibrant in color. Wilted or discolored leaves can affect your dish’s overall taste and presentation.
  • Clean well: Rinse the spinach under cold water to remove grit or dirt. Spinach can be sneaky, hiding dirt in the most unexpected places.
  • No overcrowding: Avoid cramming too much spinach into your bowl. Overcrowding can lead to uneven cooking.
  • Spices: Add a bit of heat to your dish by sprinkling some red pepper flakes before microwaving. Or how about some grated nutmeg for a warming touch? Add whatever herbs and spices you find tasty!
  • Rest: Always let your spinach cool down somewhat after you take it out of the microwave. You don’t want any scorching surprises. 
  • Container matters: Always use a microwave-safe container when cooking spinach.
  • Lids: Always use a microwave-safe lid or cover to keep your spinach cozy while it cooks.
  • Careful with the steam: Remove the lid carefully when uncovering your steamed spinach. That steam can be hot. Safety first!
  • Plastic wrap: Some folks suggest using plastic wrap to cover your spinach. But be careful! The steam can condense on the plastic and drip down.
    • This might introduce unwanted chemicals into your spinach.

How to Steam Spinach in the Microwave (EASY Recipe)

Prep time


Cooking time



Want an easy, tasty, go-to veggie dish the whole family will love? Learn how to steam spinach in the microwave. Best part? It’s ready in under 10 minutes!


  • 1 pound fresh spinach leaves

  • 2 tablespoons water

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced or 1/4 teaspoon of garlic powder

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil or butter

  • Optional
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese


  • Rinse the spinach leaves under cold water and remove any long stems or discolored leaves.
  • Place the spinach into a microwave-safe bowl and add the water, oil or butter, minced garlic, and salt. Toss to coat the leaves evenly.
  • Cover the dish with a microwave-safe lid or a microwave-safe plate. If using plastic wrap, secure the edges but leave a small vent for steam to escape.
  • Microwave on high for 1 minute, then stir the spinach so it cooks evenly.
  • Microwave for another 1-2 minutes or until wilted and tender.
  • Remove the dish and drain away any excess liquid.
  • Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese, if using. Serve and enjoy.


  • Exact cooking times will vary depending on the power of the microwave and how tender you like spinach.
How to Steam Spinach in the Microwave

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Kim - InsanelyGood
Hey there! I'm Kim. I love running, cooking, and curling up with a good book! I share recipes for people who LOVE good food, but want to keep things simple :)

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